January 17, 2016 |
Sales and price numbers for 2015 won't be in for a while yet, but I have deemed it appropriate to share prognostications about 2016. Oh, no, another survey - this time of 2,000 people with time on their hands, conducted by the real estate search engine Trulia. (This column won't be all survey, I promise - a New Year's resolution I mean to keep.) First, Trulia says, Americans still want to own homes, despite the miserable years that began, for the Philadelphia region, at least, in the third quarter of 2007.
January 13, 2016 |
LATE LAST WEEK, as darkness draped the streets of West Philadelphia, Edward Archer was caught on video walking up to a police cruiser, extending his arm, and pumping 13 bullets into the vehicle, hitting Officer Jesse Hartnett three times. The gravely wounded officer returned fire, hitting the fleeing suspect, and Archer was captured shortly thereafter. But it wasn't the shooting that shocked the city. Nor was it the irony of Archer shooting Hartnett with a police service weapon that had been stolen from an officer's home in 2013.
January 13, 2016
By Peter J. Wallison We can all agree that the financial crisis was caused by a "mortgage meltdown" mostly among subprime and other risky mortgages. But what neither The Big Short nor its greed narrative tells us is why there were so many of these mortgages in the financial system to begin with. The answer: It was not Wall Street. In June 2008, just before the crisis, more than half of all U.S. mortgages - 31 million loans - were subprime or otherwise risky. Of these, 76 percent were on the books of government agencies, primarily the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs)
October 30, 2015 |
If "Truth" wants to elicit sympathy for the journalists it portrays, then it's honest to a fault. "Truth" tells the story behind the infamous "60 Minutes II" story on the National Guard service record of then-president George W. Bush, a 2004 piece that ran in the midst of his re-election campaign. The movie is drawn from the memoir of Mary Mapes (Cate Blanchett), the CBS News producer assigned to assemble a team (including Dennis Quaid, Topher Grace, Elisabeth Moss) to ferret out the story in Texas.
October 20, 2015 |
In the college tuition game, the sticker prices are usually fake, but the money students and families pay is real. It's also often borrowed, leading to debts that make it difficult for graduates to start a family, buy a home, or take a risk on a business or career. Because there are too many losers in this game, it's encouraging that one local college has stopped playing. By resetting its tuition from $32,620 to $18,500, dropping room and board charges from $13,400 to $11,500, and making its pricing more transparent, Rosemont College has taken a bold step that could help unravel the daunting tangle of college costs.
October 7, 2015 |
HARRISBURG - Gov. Wolf on Monday called the legislature's planned vote this week on his budget - one that includes tax increases to boost education funding - "a once in a generation vote. " Legislators who vote Wednesday "don't want to be on the wrong side of history," Wolf told reporters during an invitation-only news conference at his residence. "We can't afford Republicans and Democrats - we need Pennsylvanians. We need people . . . who are looking beyond narrow partisanship. " The unusual campaign-style pitch was an opening salvo in a week that could reshape or define the impasse.
September 29, 2015 |
To the adoring crowds who came out to catch a glimpse of him - and they numbered in the millions - Pope Francis was that smiling man in white robes: a sometimes fleeting image passing along the streets of Havana, on Constitution Avenue in Washington, through New York's Central Park, and up the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia. A symbol of joy and hope, his values can sometimes be expressed very simply, and they were. "Love is the expression of faith," read a banner bearing his image on the Ben Franklin Parkway.
September 23, 2015 |
U H-OH. Looks like City Councilman David Oh, a Republican vying to keep his at-large seat, is in trouble with Philly's police and firefighters unions. Union leaders yesterday called on Oh to remove their names and logos from his campaign website, saying they had not endorsed him for the Nov. 3 election. John McNesby, president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5, and Andrew Thomas, president of the Fire Fighters' & Paramedics Union Local 22, blasted Oh in a joint statement: "It has been brought to our attention that incumbent City Councilman David Oh continues to claim through his campaign website and literature that he is endorsed by Philadelphia's police and firefighter unions.
August 6, 2015 |
Before the Phillies threw open the gates and granted him his requested release, freeing him to play for a contending team, Jimmy Rollins delivered a dose of reality to Ruben Amaro Jr. that in time Amaro probably tired of hearing. Over his 15 seasons with the Phillies, for all the times he coasted out of the batter's box or arrived late to the ballpark or just let his intrinsic swagger get the better of him, Rollins still came away with the highest respect for his second and third managers in the majors: Larry Bowa and Charlie Manuel.
May 8, 2015 |
SINCE EVERY scandal must have a "gate" at the end, can we call this one Lipgate? It took long enough, and too many young people messed up their faces trying to get giant lips by sucking the air out of a shot glass, but People magazine now reports that the infamous mouth pillows of Kylie Jenner are the result of artificial enhancement. So, chalk up another star who owes her career to LPEDs: Lip Performance Enhancing Drugs. "I have temporary lip fillers. It's just an insecurity of mine, and it's what I wanted to do," Kylie says, in a clip from that icky faux-reality show "Keeping Up with the Kardashians.